Everything Is Illuminated
What They Say: Based on the novel of the same name, the film tells the story of a third generation Ukrainian Jew who returns to his home village in search of any survivors after a Nazi cleansing during WWII. For all our German friends out there, this is a guilt free production, so it's totally German-grandparent-friendly viewing.
What We Say: One of the better films we've seen in days. Wood, who's a hairy, barefooted freak in the Tolkien trilogy, a role that has put him on our shitlist for the remainder of his career, has managed to somehow earn back a bit of our respect with this performance If he keeps this up, we just may reconsider our firm stance. Far more entertaining if you're fluent in Russian, which we are. Are you?
The Lowdown: Motorcycle Diaries meets The Pianist by way of some Central European movie we can't put our finger on.
Best Bit: Eugene Hutz creatively translates his grandfather's anti-Semitic Russian mat for Wood.
Starring:Elijah Wood, Eugene Hutz, Boris Leskin.
Good Night And Good Luck
What They Say: Directed by George Clooney, Good Night and Good Luck is a docu-drama about Edward R. Murrow's prolonged struggle with commie crazed US Senator Joseph McCarthy -- you know, the creep who was recently eulogized by liberal-crazed columnist Ann Couluter. Filmed in black and white, so heaps of under-employed liberal arts intellectuals will get erect nipples, stretching their piercings, as soon as the theatre curtains are drawn.
What We Say: This is the year Clooney changes his profile from scruffy, heartthrob actor to scruffy heartthrob director. Now, when Clooney does his patronizing pause, followed by an insightful smirk before answering any questions, more people will lean in to listen. Oh Georgie, you've come a long way, baby. He's not as compelling as in Syriana here, and all those hard-boiled-voiced early-50s characters can be annoying, but the movie was made with a clear purpose: to remind America of what a bunch of cowards the major media is today, operating under a similar hysteria, compared to their straighter, but tougher forefathers in the early TV years.
The Lowdown: Talk Radio meets Reds by way of The Insider times Network.
Best Bit: Clooney casting himself as one of the lead roles.
Starring:David Strathairn, Robert Downey Jr., Patricia Clarkson, Frank Langella, Jeff Daniels, George Clooney.
What They Say: Steve Martin exhumes and commits necrophilia on
What We Say: We tried three times to finish this DVD, to no avail. Watching this film was sort of like being stuck in an uncomfortable conversation with someone who keeps telling poorly timed and generally awkward jokes, yet you're too polite to do anything but feign a chuckle. Peter Sellers' Clousseau, while clumsy and awkward, was able to succeed as a result of some basic intuitive talents -- that is, the talent for slapstick and totally unselfconscious buffoonery. Martin's Clousseau is a functionally retarded buffoon, with a silly accent, and we're not talking about the fun kind of silly. Flat-silly.
The Lowdown: Rain Man meets The French Connection to the Police Academy-4th power.
Best Bit: Realizing that my "eject" button on my DVD player works
Starring:Steve Martin, Kevin Kline, BeyoncI Knowles, Jean Reno.